Overlook Neighborhood Update (Feb. 19)

1) Surviving the 9.0 Earthquake: Tools you can use (Saturday, Feb. 20)
2) Homeless camps update
3) Air toxics meeting (Thursday, Feb. 25)
4) Gypsy moth training
5) Sunday Parkways returns to North Portland (Sunday, June 26)
6) Grimm films in Overlook


1) Surviving the 9.0 Earthquake: Tools you can use (Saturday, Feb. 20)

summitPersonal and Community Preparedness is on the agenda for Sustainable Overlook/Overlook NET’s Resilience Summit. Learn what a 9.0 Earthquake will look like, what will help us survive and recover more quickly, and how to prepare your household.

Join your neighbors for an interactive day of presentations, information and workshops that will give you a practical plan to be ready. The keynote speaker will be geotechnical engineer Allison Pyrch, a participant in OPB’s Unprepared documentary “Surviving a 9.0.”

Lunch catered by New American Restaurant – vegetarian and vegan friendly. Register and reserve your lunch at sustainableoverlook.org or just show up on Saturday and bring your own lunch.

Surviving the 9.0 Earthquake
Saturday, Feb. 20, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Beach Elementary School (1710 N Humboldt St.)


2) Homeless camps update

The meeting between representative of the Overlook Neighborhood Association reported last week was postponed by the mayor’s office. The city continues to work on a permit for Hazelnut Grove, and a meeting between campers, the neighborhood and city staff has been rescheduled for Friday, Feb. 26. Stay tuned for updates.

This week was not without events, though. RVs and other vehicles illegally parked on N Greeley Avenue beneath the Overlook Neighborhoods were finally moved.

Other neighborhoods are talking about the city’s plans for homeless camping. The Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods on Tuesday will hold a public meeting to talk about the city’s plans. The meeting is open to everyone. Topics will include:

  • Discussion of the Mayor’s short-term framework
  • Explanation of Home for Everyone and the long-term plan to end homelessness
  • Experience with public involvement in the Mayor’s plan
  • Next steps

Homeless camping discussion
Tuesday, Feb. 23, 6:30 p.m.
Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (4815 NE 7th Ave.)


3) Air toxics meeting (Thursday, Feb. 25)

Reports of air toxics in Portland have been spreading, and North Portland is a hot spot. The Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods will hold a public meeting on Thursday, Feb. 25 to inform residents about the situation. Topics will include:

  • What we currently know
  • General air quality context
  • DEQ as an agency
  • Maps reports
  • Articles and other data
  • Next steps

Air toxics public meeting
Thursday, Feb. 25, 7:30 p.m.
Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (4815 NE 7th Ave.)


4) Gypsy moth training

Although Asian gypsy moths are not established in Oregon, they were detected in the summer 2015 in Forest Park, North Portland and in Washington state. The Asian gypsy moth is an exotic pest and a closely related species to the European gypsy moth. The European gypsy moth is well known for defoliating (eating leaves off of trees) an average of 700,000 acres per year, and as much as 12.9 million acres of forest in the eastern United States in a single year. In the last 30 years, Asian gypsy moth has been detected in Oregon three times and successfully eradicated each time.

Gypsy MothTo help respond to the Asian Gypsy Moth situation, the Oregon Forest Pest Detector program is organizing several AGM monitoring workshops in spring 2016 for community members and OFPD program graduates.  At the workshop you will learn how you can help by surveying for AGM egg masses and pupal cases in target areas of North Portland.

There will be three workshops in North Portland over the next couple of weeks. Choose one that works best for your schedule. Registration is simple:

  1. Select your preferred workshop date below and fill out the registration form. All workshops will take place at the St Johns Community Center (8427 N Central St.) from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
  2. Then, review the online AGM learning module below before attending your session. The module covers the history, life cycle, and management of EGM and AGM. It is important that you arrive at the field workshop understanding the information in the module; you will need the information to successfully complete the field exercise.

5) Sunday Parkways returns to North Portland (Sunday, June 26)

Sunday Parkways North 2016The Portland Bureau of Transportation and presenting sponsor Kaiser Permanente announced the Sunday Parkways 2016 schedule, featuring five traffic-free events through Portland neighborhoods, including a new route linking the cities of Portland and Milwaukie and crossing the new Sellwood Bridge.

Sunday Parkways is a series of free community events opening the city’s largest public space—its streets—for people to walk, bike, roll and discover active transportation. The events are hugely popular. Total attendance in 2015 set a record 119,000.

View the complete schedule of Sunday Parkways throughout the summer online. They event returns to North Portland June 26, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a 9.5-mile ride.


6) Grimm films in Overlook

Notice a lot of traffic around N Melrose Drive and N Overlook Boulevard on Friday? The NBC show “Grimm” is filming in Overlook again. Shooting is scheduled to wrap by Saturday evening.

 

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Feb. 13)

1) Update on homeless camps
2) Overlook Neighborhood Association Meeting (Feb. 16)
3) Take a romantic walk in the park on Valentine’s Day
4) Presidents’ Day swimming at Portland Parks pools (Feb. 15)
5) Earthquake Preparedness Summit coming to Overlook


1) Update on homeless camps

At a City Council work session on Monday, Mayor Charlie Hales’ chief of staff Josh Alpert unveiled the long-awaited plan to address homelessness in Portland. They portray it as a four-pronged approach, but really there’s a hidden fifth prong that is crucial to Overlook Neighborhood (see below).

Portland Business Journal published a story about the plan this week that includes an online poll. It’s unscientific, but with more than 400 respondents so far, 90 percent oppose the city’s camping plans.

You can read the city’s complete “Safe Sleep Policy Overview,” but in summary, the four measures are:

  1. Safe sleep: People can sleep on sidewalks in groups of up to six people. They may not erect tents or entirely block a sidewalk. On city right of way other than sidewalks and other remnant properties, campers may erect tents from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m.
  2. Organized, city-sanctioned camping: The city will partner with charitable organizations that have experience working with the homeless to run larger camps with tents and structures. The city is still working to identify potential sites for these camps. The camps must be organized with a code of conduct. The city will provide some basic services like restrooms, trash pickup and water.
  3. Organized, city-sanctioned Car/RV camping: Partner organizations such as churches may allow car/RV camping in their parking lots. The city would provide restrooms and sanitation.
  4. Shelter: The city hopes to develop more shelter space in the long term, but how and where have not been determined. This portion of the strategy remains undeveloped.

It is important to note that as of now the city will not allow camping in parks. It also intends for this to be a six-month to one-year trial program.

The fifth prong, not mentioned in the overview, applies to Hazelnut Grove in Overlook Neighborhood and a couple of other established camps. Mayor Hales’ office says that these camps will be grandfathered in and issued permits without any oversight or assistance from a sponsoring charitable organization.  They will exist outside the “Safe Sleep Policy” system. The use permit for Hazelnut Grove is still taking shape.

OKNA Board Chair Dannielle Herman and board member Chris Trejbal will meet with representatives from the mayor’s office and Hazelnut Grove next week to discuss requirements and restrictions to be included in the permit.

Next week’s Overlook Update will include a report on how things go at the meeting.

OKNA also has been discussing the camping plan with other neighborhoods. At a meeting of neighborhood leaders from across Portland this week, there was widespread concern about the mayor’s plan and the failure to engage with neighborhoods. They are starting to realize that this is a challenge that confronts all of Portland and that it’s important that we get it right in Overlook so that ineffective practices do not spread.

OKNA will continue to work with neighborhoods to present a united voice condemning the mayor’s go-it-alone approach. If Portland truly wants to solve its homelessness crisis, it must bring all stakeholders to the table and work with neighborhoods to develop real solutions.

Finally, the OKNA Board recently voted to endorse the Welcome Home Coalition which is working to build affordable housing infrastructure with at least 40,000 homes affordable to Portland Metro area families.


2) Overlook Neighborhood Association Meeting (Feb. 16)

OKNA Logo (Transparent)Residents of Overlook Neighborhood should plan to attend the monthly OKNA meeting on Tuesday. A full agenda will include reports on street parking and the city’s plans that include possibly requiring permits. Sgt. Greg Stewart of Portland Police also will be on hand to present an update on neighborhood crime data and plans for changing patrols in Overlook.

OKNA General Meeting (Agenda)
Tuesday, Feb. 16, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Kaiser Town Hall (3704 N Interstate Ave.)


3) Take a romantic walk in the park on Valentine’s Day

Sunday is Valentine’s day, and the Portland Parks Foundation has put out its list of top romantic parks in the city. Making the list is North Portland’s Peninsula Park, about which the foundation wrote:

Over 10,000 crocus blooms will delight you and your date in this historic park known for its summer rose displays. If it is drizzling during your visit, the National Heritage designated pavilion is a great place to sip hot chocolate and overlook the gardens.

Check out the entire list online.


4) Presidents’ Day swimming at Portland Parks pools (Feb. 15)

Kids swimmingDon’t have work or school? Don’t worry Portland Parks and Recreation will open its pools for the day. There will be both open swim and family swim sessions.

Open swims are for all ages.  Non-swimmers and children under 48 inches tall must be supervised in the water by an adult swimmer.

During Family Swim sessions, children under 18 years old must be accompanied in the water by a parent or guardian.

A complete list of open pools and hours is available online. Closest to Overlook are Matt Dishman Pool (1:15-3:45 p.m. for Open Play Swim) and Columbia Pool (11:30-1 p.m. Family Swim and 4-8 p.m. Open Play Swim).


5) Earthquake Preparedness Summit coming to Overlook

Your Overlook neighbors want everyone to be prepared for a major earthquake and able to rebound quickly. We need to connect with each other to leverage our collective resources to help us adapt to and overcome the unexpected.  Whether it’s growing your own food, connecting more closely with neighbors, or building relationships with emergency responders, perhaps the best part about building resilience is that its benefits can be enjoyed almost immediately, not just when disaster strikes.

Sustainable Overlook has joined up with Overlook’s Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) and Multnomah County’s Schools Uniting Neighborhoods to organize a day of discussion and active education about ways we can build our preparation and resiliency at the scale of our homes, our streets and our neighborhoods.

New American will provide lunch for $7 per person.

Register online.

Send questions to sustainable@overlookneighborhood.org.

summit

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Feb. 5)

1) Other neighborhoods support Overlook on homeless camps
2) Other news about homeless camping
3) Overlook Neighborhood Emergency Team meeting (Monday, Feb. 8)
4) Preparedness: Where resilience begins (Saturday, Feb. 20)
5) Celebrate North Portland 2016 (Saturday, March 12)


1) Other neighborhoods support Overlook on homeless camps

The Overlook Neighborhood Association has been working with neighborhoods throughout the city to encourage Mayor Charlie Hales and the rest of City Hall to develop a serious, effective strategy for helping our city’s homeless residents. Several neighborhoods have endorsed a letter urging the city to include reasonable restrictions for permitted camps and to engage more with neighborhoods.

In addition, the North Portland Neighborhood Chairs issued a statement of support. It condemns the city’s failure to work with Overlook on the Hazelnut Grove camp. From the letter:

The decision to unilaterally sanction the formation of Hazelnut Grove without a public process was misguided and has created a lack of trust of the City by other neighborhoods in the position to consider space for encampments. The lack of planning for Hazelnut Grove is in high contrast to the planned long-time encampment on the border of our district, Dignity Village.  The hasty formation by the City of Hazelnut Grove and the continued poor communication with those encamped and the surrounding community has placed an undue and unexpected burden on these residents.  Members of the Overlook Neighborhood Association have been put in the role of fending for themselves as the City, with no apparent plan, makes administrative decisions and develops policy without engagement.

Read the full letter here.


2) Other news about homeless camping

The Overlook Neighborhood Association Board this week formed a task force to coordinate response and strategy on issues related to homelessness and camping. Three board members (Chair Dannielle Herman, Cynthia Sulaski and Chris Trejbal) will join three other neighborhood residents most directly impacted by the camp.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Portland City Council will hold a work session that about homelessness. Mayor Charlie Hales’ Chief of Staff Josh Alpert will present information about the homeless state of emergency. He reportedly will address questions that have been raised by neighborhoods about camps such as Hazelnut Grove in Overlook. He also will explain city policy and plans for homeless camps going forward.

There will be no opportunity for public testimony at the meeting, but it will be open to the public. Overlook neighbors interested in the issue are encouraged to attend.

City Council Work Session
Monday, Feb. 8, 3-5 p.m.
City Hall (1221 SW 4th Ave.)
City Council Chambers, Second Floor


3) Overlook Neighborhood Emergency Team meeting (Monday, Feb. 8)

Come meet your neighbors and talk about emergency preparedness.  Join the Overlook Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) on Monday, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Lucky Lab. And mark your calendar for the March 14 meeting, which will be part of NET’s Skills ’n Drill series at Patton Park.

Send questions to overlookprepares@gmail.com.

Overlook NET meeting
Monday, Feb. 8, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Luck Lab (1700 N Killingsworth St.)


4) Preparedness: Where resilience begins (Saturday, Feb. 20)

summitAwareness that we are underprepared for disasters, such as a Cascadian Subduction Zone earthquake, has been steadily growing over the past year.  Fortunately, Overlook’s Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) has also been stepping up its activities to help enable all of us to become more resilient in our homes, on our streets and across our neighborhood.  On Saturday, Feb. 20, Overlook will hold a Resilience Summit, as a way to bring neighbors together and quickly touch on the high points of preparations underway with first responders, experts and neighborhood volunteers.

Although many of us are too busy to help with NET, the hope is that this summit is an opportunity for everyone to learn what’s already been done and how we can collectively prepare as individual homes and as a united neighborhood.

The morning session will feature presentations and discussion by first responders and other community leaders, while the afternoon will offer a series of hands-on demos and short 30-minute workshops.  Lunch will be available at a reduced cost by local restaurant superstars, New American.  This event is open to anyone and everyone.  Come when you can and stay for as long as you like.

Learn more and RSVP online.

Overlook Resilience Summit 2016
Saturday, Feb. 20, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Beach Elementary School (1710 N Humboldt St.)


5) Celebrate North Portland 2016 (Saturday, March 12)

The sixth annual Celebrate North Portland takes place March 12. North Portland residents will come together once again to recognize the individuals, organizations, and companies that make North Portland such a great place to live and work. This year’s theme is “Celebrate North Portland – Oscar Night.” Watch out for the paparazzi as you arrive on the red carpet, and come enjoy a fun evening to recognize your neighbors.

Celebrate North Portland is an event to appreciate and recognize the many people that have dedicated their time and energies to making our community such a great corner of the world.  The dinner and entertainment are designed to recognize these many wonderful people.

Tickets are on sale now online.

Celebrate North Portland 2016
Saturday, March 12, 6-9 p.m.
University of Portland, Bauccio Commons (5000 N Willamette Blvd.)

 

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North Portland Neighborhoods support Overlook

The North Portland Neighborhood Chairs sent the following statement to City Hall. It supports Overlook in our ongoing attempts to convince the city to work with us on the Hazelnut Grove homeless camp and to develop a serious strategy for dealing with the homelessness crisis.

Most of us have a variety of ideas about how to address people in our community that are homeless, but we are unified in our support of the Overlook Neighborhood Association as it engages with their  newest neighbors at  Hazelnut Grove.  The decision to unilaterally sanction the formation of Hazelnut Grove without a public process was misguided and has created a lack of trust of the City by other neighborhoods in the position to consider space for encampments. The lack of planning for Hazelnut Grove is in high contrast to the planned long-time encampment on the border of our district, Dignity Village.  The hasty formation by the City of Hazelnut Grove and the continued poor communication with those encamped and the surrounding community has placed an undue and unexpected burden on these residents.  Members of the Overlook Neighborhood Association have been put in the role of fending for themselves as the City, with no apparent plan, makes administrative decisions and develops policy without engagement.

While we are not in universal agreement with all of the requests by the Overlook Neighborhood   Association for a belated City permit for Hazelnut Grove, we do strongly agree that the City needs to seriously consider their recommendations. We urge the City to begin immediately to communicate with and dedicate resources to Hazelnut Grove residents as well as to the City’s long time officially recognized neighborhood association, the Overlook Neighborhood Association.

 

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Jan. 29)

1) Crime and homeless camps update
2) Downtown on-street parking rates increase to $2 per hour (Feb. 1)
3) Youth sought for Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee
4) Pre-session town hall with state senators and representatives (Jan. 30)
5) Learn more about the Portland Harbor Superfund Cleanup
6) OKNA Board meeting (Feb. 2)


1) Crime and homeless camps update

At the request of the Overlook Neighborhood Association, Portland Police provided data about the number of calls for service from Overlook over the past three years (2013-15). Overall the total number of calls were down in 2015 from the previous two years. However, calls for people in areas they should not be or behaving in an inappropriate way for the area, suspicious individuals and vehicles, and theft were all up over the two-year period. View the full report in a large pdf.

Based on the analysis, police are working to deploy additional patrols in the neighborhood. OKNA will continue to analyze the available data for trends and steps to improve the safety of residents.

There is no way to know if any particular calls were related to homeless camps and other homeless people. If residents experience problems or see suspicious activity, they should call Portland Police on the non-emergency line at 503-823-3333. In case of an emergency, call 911.

Residents interested in the future of homeless camps in Portland can attend an upcoming community conversation by Commissioner Amanda Fritz. The focus will be proposed development of the SE 3rd  & Harrison site as a future home of the Right 2 Dream Too homeless camp.

Community conversation about SE 3rd and Harrison site
Saturday, Jan. 30, 10 – noon
St. Philip Neri (2408 SE 16th Ave.) in Carvlin Hall


2) Downtown on-street parking rates increase to $2 per hour (Feb. 1)

The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) will increase downtown on-street parking rates to $2 per hour, effective Monday, Feb. 1. The higher rate was approved by Portland City Council and recommended by a stakeholder advisory committee.

PBOT uses meter rates to manage the supply of on-street parking. PBOT’s goal is to have on-street parking occupancy rates lower than 85 percent. Such a rate ensures that spaces will be available for the next customer. A study of downtown parking rates found many areas of downtown that exceeded the critical 85 percent benchmark. In some areas, parking occupancy tops out above 95 percent.

The new rate is the first change to downtown meter rates since 2009. Public transit fares and off-street parking rates both have increased since then. Rates for PBOT’s six SmartPark garages, which offer nearly 4,000 parking spaces to the public, are not affected by Monday’s new meter rates.

Downtown parking meters operate from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, unless otherwise posted.

For more information, see Frequently Asked Questions on PBOT’s web site.


3) Youth sought for Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee

Give Overlook and North Portland a voice in how Oregon handles bicyclists and pedestrians. The Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee seeks to fill a recently vacated position that represents the youth community (someone younger than 21 at the time of appointment).

The eight-member committee, appointed by the governor, acts as a liaison between the public and the Oregon Department of Transportation. It advises ODOT in the regulation of bicycle and pedestrian traffic and the establishment of bikeways and walkways. Members serve four-year terms.

Learn more about this exciting opportunity and how to apply online.


4) Pre-session town hall with state senators and representatives (Jan. 30)

Senate Majority Leader Ginny Burdick

Senate Majority Leader Ginny Burdick

The 2016 Oregon legislative session starts next week. Come to a pre-session town hall and listen to Senate Majority Leader Ginny Burdick and House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson. They will be joined by Sen. Richard Devlin, Rep. Margaret Doherty and Rep. Ann Lininger. All will discuss the upcoming session, key issues for Oregon and their goals. They also will take questions from those in attendance.

Pre-session legislative town hall
Sat, Jan. 30, 11 a.m.
Stephens Creek Crossing (6719 SW 26th Ave.)


5) Learn more about the Portland Harbor Superfund Cleanup

If you missed this week’s forum about the Environmental Protection Agency’s plans to clean up the Portland Harbor Superfund site, several more are scheduled in the coming weeks.

The Portland Harbor Superfund Site resulted from more than 100 years of industrial activity.  The EPA has documented contamination in the water and sediments that is harmful to human health. EPA placed the Portland Harbor on the National Priorities List in 2000.

The upcoming forums include:

  • Monday, Feb. 8, 7 p.m., sponsored by the Audubon Society, 5151 NW Cornell Rd.
  • Tuesday, Feb. 9, 7 p.m., sponsored by the League of Women Voters, Multnomah County Building, 501 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
  • Thursday, Feb. 11, 6:30 p.m., EPA information and discussion session, Matt Dishman Community Center, 77 NE Knott St.

To learn more about these and other upcoming opportunities to learn more about the harbor cleanup, visit the EPA’s information page.


6) OKNA Board meeting (Feb. 2)

OKNA Logo (Transparent)The Overlook Neighborhood Association Board will meet on Tuesday to discuss a number of issues related to the neighborhood. View the full meeting agenda.

OKNA Board meeting
Tuesday, Feb. 2, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Overlook House (3839 N Melrose Dr.)

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Jan. 23)

1) Willamette River Superfund Community Forum (Tuesday, Jan. 26)
2) Speaker Tina Kotek town hall meeting (Thursday, Jan. 28)


1) Willamette River Superfund Community Forum (Tuesday, Jan. 26)

Willamette Superfund ForumThe Lower Willamette River is a valuable natural resource. However, Portland Harbor, a section of the River between the Broadway Bridge and Sauvie Island, has contaminants which are harmful to people, fish and wildlife. EPA is taking action to make it a cleaner, healthier place to live, work and play. A Proposed Plan that will be released this spring will outline the Environmental Protection Agency’s recommended path for achieving those goals.

It’s not yet time for the plan or public comment. But it is time to engage with EPA to learn more, ask questions and hear information about Portland Harbor before the plan is released.

Hear EPA’s range of options, get your questions answered and have a say at the upcoming community forum. Find out how the cleanup impacts you. Panelists include representatives from the Portland Harbor Community Advisory, EPA, environmental advocates and more. Sponsored by Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group.

Willamette River Superfund Community Forum
Tuesday, Jan. 26, 7-9 p.m.
St. John’s Community Center (8427 N Central St.)


2) Speaker Tina Kotek town hall meeting (Thursday, Jan. 28)

House Speaker Tina Kotek

House Speaker Tina Kotek

Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek represents the half of Overlook Neighborhood north of N Going Street.  Anyone interested in sharing their questions and thoughts about what the Legislature gets up to this year should attend her pre-session town hall meeting on Thursday.

Rep. Lew Frederick will join Kotek at the event. He represents a North Portland district and has announced he will run for the Senate seat that Chip Shields will vacate. If he wins, he will represent the same portion of Overlook as Kotek.

The Legislature will convene on Feb. 1. Hot topics heading into the session include raising the minimum wage, lifting the ban (called preemption) on localities adopting a higher minimum wage than the states, the housing crisis, the business environment and more.

Pre-session town hall with Speaker Kotek and Rep. Frederick
Thursday, Jan. 28, 7-8:30 p.m.
Charles Jordan Community Center (9009 N Foss Ave.)

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Jan. 15)

1) OKNA general meeting (Tuesday, Jan. 19)
2) Overlook Neighborhood receives grant for community mural
3) Report concerns about homeless camps
4) Learn about Columbia River Levee System (Tuesday, Jan. 26)
5) Help update the Portland Plant List (Tuesday, Feb. 9)

1) OKNA general meeting (Tuesday, Jan. 19)

OKNA Logo (Transparent)The Overlook Neighborhood Association will hold its monthly general meeting on Tuesday. The focus of the meeting will be on the subject of homelessness in Portland; current services and resources provided by the city, county and non-profits to shelter and transition individuals and families into permanent housing; and identification of needs that are currently not being met. We will address the broader problem and then narrow it down to answering the question “What can I do to help.” Please note that the presentations and discussion will be about homelessness in general, not about the Greeley Avenue camps.

OKNA general meeting
Tuesday, Jan. 19, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Kaiser Town Hall (3704 N Interstate Ave.)
Agenda

2) Overlook Neighborhood receives grant for community mural

The Overlook Neighborhood Association, in partnership with Viva La Free, has won a $2,000 grant for our Community Mural Project from the North Portland Neighborhood Services Grant Review Committee. The grant will help cover labor costs associated with working with youth to create and promote the project.

Layna Lewis — an artist, activist and founder of Viva La Free — will supervise and instruct a youth team, teaching them comprehensive skills through experiential learning. For two years she has brought a weekly art group to Portland’s only safe house for sex-trafficked and sexually exploited children. Creatively processing difficult emotions empowers survivors to self-determine their own healing. Currently two youths are working on this project with more to join.

The mural project will be completed in late summer.  It will beautify the Overlook neighborhood, spotlighting our history and many beautiful green spaces while also generating positive public attention to Viva La Free’s work.

Over the next few months we will continue to raise funding and begin the design process. We looking forward to keeping you updated on the project’s success.

3) Questions about homeless campers

Has a homeless camp sprung up near your home? The City of Portland requests thtat residents report questions or concerns to the city’s “one point of contact.” It is an online reporting form available at portlandoregon.gov/campsite.

A city staff member will work with an intern in Mayor Charlie Hales’ office to review reports submitted through the form. They will seek to identify problem sites, determine whether they are on city-owned or privately-owned land, and then to share information with the mayor’s office, appropriate city bureaus and others to alert them to any problems.

4) Learn about Columbia River Levee System (Tuesday, Jan. 26)

Interested in preparing for emergencies? Worried about the next major flood? Then come hear from the Multnomah County Drainage District about the Columbia River levees that protect North, Northeast and Central Portland neighbors from flooding. The discussion will include Portland’s flood history and what happens during emergency events.

Learn about ways to get involved and leave with resources from Portland Bureau of Emergency Management. And bring your questions.

Columbia River levee and emergency preparedness
Tuesday, Jan. 26, 6-7:30 p.m.
Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (4815 NE 7th Ave.)

5) Help update the Portland Plant List (Tuesday, Feb. 9)

The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS), in partnership with the Bureau of Environmental Services (BES), will hold a public hearing on a proposed Portland Plant List (PPL) update. The list identifies native plants and nuisance plant species found in Portland and the metropolitan region. The document describes the ecological and social benefits provided by plants on the Native Plants List, as well as the impacts and risks associated with the spread of invasive plants on the Nuisance Plants List.

The PPL is a technical and educational document, which is used widely by City staff, developers, local natural resource and watershed agencies and organizations, and residents throughout the metropolitan region. The list is used in administering certain zoning regulations, including those that apply in environmentally sensitive areas of Portland. The document also includes a list of plants that are required to be removed if found in the city. The city first published the PPL in 1991 and has updated it several times over the years, most recently in 2011.

Proposed amendments to the Portland Plant List updates include:

  1. Removal of 16 species from the Native Plants List (Attachment A)
  2. Addition of eight species, and reassessment and update of three species ranks in the Nuisance Plants List (Attachment B)
  3. Technical amendments — corrections to plant taxonomy (Attachment C)
  4. Updates to the Portland Plant List Appendix A, History (Attachment D)

Read the Portland Plant List Update Staff Report

Public hearing on proposed Portland Plant List update
Tuesday, Feb. 9, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
1900 SW 4th Ave., Room 2500B

 

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Jan. 8)

1) Homeless camps update
2) Delayed garbage pickup
3) Parks and Recreation Budget Dialogue (Tuesday, Jan. 12)
4) Sons of Haiti Lodge food carts update (Thursday, Jan. 14)
5) Radon Forum (Wednesday, Jan. 20)

———-

1) Homeless camps update

WheelerOverlook Neighborhood residents met this week with mayoral candidate Ted Wheeler (right) to discuss the homeless camps on Greeley Avenue. It was an informative exchange of ideas about the camps in Overlook and the challenge of tackling homelessness in Portland more broadly. Neighbors and the Overlook Neighborhood Association will continue to try to engage with leaders to work for the health, safety and well-being of all Portland residents.

Meanwhile, Willamette Week released a video, shot in December, featuring interviews with some of the campers and highlighting challenges they are experiencing.

2) Delayed garbage pickup

Was your garbage pickup late this week because of the weather? During severe weather conditions, driving may be hazardous and the collection of garbage, compost and recycling may be delayed or postponed for Portland residents.

You can find your company’s information by typing in your address at www.garbagedayreminders.com or www.portlandmaps.com/beta/. In the case of severe weather, collection will be prioritized in the following order:

  1. Garbage
  2. Composting
  3. Recycling

When garbage or compost collection must be delayed or postponed, a reasonable effort will be made to pick up before the customer’s next scheduled collection day. Evening and Saturday collections may be necessary. In the event of a severe weather delay, please leave your roll carts at the curb to accommodate collection.

If garbage or compost collection must be delayed or postponed to the next scheduled collection day, twice the amount of the current subscribed roll cart size will be collected on the next regularly scheduled collection day at no additional charge. 

If recycling collection must be delayed or postponed it will be collected the next regular collection day.

3) Parks and Recreation Budget Dialogue (Tuesday, Jan. 12)

PPSBudgetDo you take your family to play at Overlook Park? Swim at the Matt Dishman Community Center or Peninsula Park? Help make sure they and other Portland Parks and Recreation facilities have the funding they need by attending a Parks budget meeting on Tuesday. Snacks and childcare provided.

Read the current budget proposal, including cuts and new expenditures online.

Portland Parks and Recreation Budget Dialogue
Tuesday, Jan. 12, 6-8 p.m.
St. Philip Neri Parish, Carvlin Hall (2408 SE 16th Ave.)

4) Sons of Haiti Lodge food carts update (Thursday, Jan. 14)

HaitiLodgeThe historic Sons of Haiti Lodge is one of the last black-owned properties on Mississippi Avenue. It houses chapters of the Masonic Order and Sisterhood of Eastern Stars.

When the City of Portland announced that food carts at the lodge were not in compliance with code, the Boise Neighborhood Association and local business owners rallied to help upgrade the site. Join them on Thursday to learn about the revival of this historic North Portland community site. Mississippi Pizza and Por Que No? Taqueria will provide food at the event.

Sons of Haiti Lodge update
Thursday, Jan. 14, 6-7 p.m.
Sons of Haiti Lodge (3503 N Mississippi Ave.)

5) Radon Forum (Wednesday, Jan. 20)

The American Lung Association in Oregon and NW Radon Coalition, will host a radon forum on Jan. 20 at George Middle School in North Portland. This is a free educational event to help the community learn more about radon. The event is free and open to the public. Radon kits will be available for $5 while supplies last. For more information, check out their flier.

Radon Forum Northwest
Wednesday, Jan. 20, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
George Middle School (10000 N Burr Ave.)

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Jan. 3)

Your  weekly update editor has recovered from New Year’s festivities. My apologies for the late delivery. Happy New Year’s!

1) Greeley homeless camps update
2) OKNA Board meeting (Tuesday, Nov. 3)

1) Greeley homeless camps update

homeless_fenceThe City installed a barbed wire-topped fence around three sides of the camps just before the New Year. The Portland Tribune noted, “All eyes on Overlook homeless camp.”

Meanwhile, the empty Wapato Correctional Facility often comes up in discussions about where to house the homeless. Multnomah County owns the facility and issued an analysis that Wapato cannot be used for homeless services. The county claims:

  1. There are financial restrictions.
  2. The initial capital costs are prohibitive.
  3. Operational costs could be better spent on other facilities.
  4. The site is incompatible with nearby businesses.
  5. Wapato is not easily accessible to downtown and not well-served by transit.

Those arguments have not convinced backers of using Wapato to house the homeless who argue that it can be done if the will is there.

2) OKNA Board meeting (Tuesday, Nov. 3)

OKNA Logo (Transparent)The Overlook Neighborhood Association Board will hold its regular meeting on Tuesday. Topics for discussion include the year-end report and an update on Greeley homeless camps, including outreach to other neighborhood associations.

OKNA Board meeting
Tuesday, Jan. 5, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Overlook House (3839 N Melrose Dr.)

 

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Overlook Neighborhood Update (Dec. 24)

1) Happy Holidays!
2) OKNA asks city to include restrictions in homeless camp permit
3) Holiday parking advisory
4) Want to get married in a Portland park in 2016?
5) Marijuana Policy Task Force

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1) Happy Holidays!

The Overlook Neighborhood Association wishes you and yours a wonderful holiday season. We hope these weeks are full of merriment and joy.
happy holidays

2) OKNA asks city to include restrictions in homeless camp permit

As mentioned in an email earlier this week, the Overlook Neighborhood Association Board sent a letter to Mayor Charlie Hales asking that eight items be included in any permit for homeless camps along N Greeley Avenue. Read the full letter here.

OKNA Board Member Chris Trejbal discussed the letter and the camp on KBOO radio this week.

Also this week, City Commissioner Nick Fish discussed homelessness, including the camps on Greeley, on on KGW’s Straight Talk.

“I don’t think we should ever accept the notion that a tent over your head is a good substitute for roof over your head,” he said. “Once you normalize things like tent cities, once you say that that’s an acceptable alternative, then you really let [public officials] off the hook.”

The full discussion about homelessness is worth watching to hear a view that differs from the mayor’s approach. It begins at 10:19 in the video. (Click here if video fails to load.)

3) Holiday parking advisory

Traveling downtown during the holidays? Portland Bureau of Transportation SmartPark garages will close at 11 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 24, and remain closed all of Dec. 25. They will re-open on Saturday, Dec. 26 at 5 a.m. The one exception is the O’Bryant Square SmartPark garage. That garage will close at 7 p.m. on Thursday, December 24 and will not re-open for regular business hours until Monday, December 28 at 6:30 a.m.

If you are headed downtown on Dec. 25, on street parking will be free all day.

Garages will remain open for regular business on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. On-street parking will be free New Year’s Day.

4) Want to get married in a Portland park in 2016?

park_weddingPortland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) is the proud steward of more than 200 parks, gardens, and natural settings that can be reserved for weddings and/or receptions. These lovely settings are great locations for ceremonies and celebrations.

Portland Parks & Recreation will begin taking wedding reservations for 2016 events on Jan. 4 in person, via phone, and by mail and fax only.  The PP&R Customer Service Center opens at 8:00 a.m. for walk-in service on weekdays, and on Jan. 4, staff will begin answering phones at approximately 11:00 a.m.

First come, first served.  Walk-in customers will receive assistance before phone callers, mail or faxes are addressed.

We provide hot beverages to those standing in line, to help customers through the early morning chill!  Typically, many eager future happy couples stand in line prior to the center’s opening to ensure they get their first choices of PP&R wedding venues and their preferred dates.

Online reservations will not begin until Jan. 11, but by then many of the best locations and dates will be taken.

Click here to learn more.

5) Marijuana Policy Task Force

Portland residents are invited to apply to serve on the 2016-17 Marijuana Policy Task Force. The task force will inform the ongoing development of the Office of Neighborhood Involvement’s Marijuana Policy Program by engaging community and industry stakeholders with different skill sets, perspectives, and priorities to ensure the safety and livability of Portland neighborhoods.

The Marijuana Policy Task Force will meet monthly from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. on the fourth Wednesday of every month from Jan. 27, 2016 to Jan. 25, 2017.

Interested parties are encouraged to apply to serve for a year-long term. Download the application here. Please complete, sign, and mail this application along with your biography or résumé and any additional information by 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 6. Send completed application materials to the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, Attention: Marijuana Policy Program, 1221 SW 4th. Ave. Rm. 110, Portland, OR 97204.

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